There’s a ritual every first working day of the week at my workplace codenamed Unit Meeting. It is limited to my department. We will gather to do praise and worship for some twenty minutes, proceed to hearing the exultation aka word of God for another twenty equal minutes, chitchat for say five minutes before reading the minutes of the previous week’s Unit Meeting. Let’s just say we end up spending the first hour of our Mondays achieving little or nothing.

When I resumed work earlier in the year, I found the whole concept ridiculous. I mean, if you go to Church a day earlier to have a personal relationship with your maker, why resume for the work that puts food on your table the following morning to be so irresponsible? I remember protesting this charade more than twice even though I was a mere ad-hoc staff in the unit.

As the months rolled by, I became amused rather than chagrined. Amused because I got to find out the unit where I worked has a documented notoriety for hypocrisy among other units in the workplace. So it was amusing to watch departmental staff backbite themselves during the week only to gather in Praise and Worship the next Monday morning.

I soon learnt how to disinterest myself from the spoof of a meeting. I will stick to my phone and get lost in my own world in the midst of their gabfest. I was following my new found strategy this Monday morning when one of my Oga at the meeting angrily accused me of always pressing my phone at the meetings as if I am more important than the others. I could have sworn it was premeditated and well rehearsed.

Nobody saw it coming. I was at the point of making a very important mobile transfer when the verbal attack landed. Also Mr Ajibola was regaling me with his remote relationship with the great Fela Anikulapo Kuti on WhatsApp. Why would anyone ask me to drop my phone at this time if they weren’t the Antichrist?

It would have been another opportunity to reiterate my belief in the uselessness of the charade they call meeting but it would have amounted to another futile effort. It was Monday morning and I wasn’t in the mood for time and energy consuming nought. I gently put a way my phone without a word.

Imagine my amusement and chagrin upon finding out the next agenda after Prayer and Worship. It so happened that there is a general prayer meeting for our over a thousand staff every first week of the month. Staff find the prayer meeting boring so it was recording low turn-out before soft drinks and biscuits was introduced. Yes they bait people to cone and pray with a bottle of coca cola and snack. Now the turnout has become overwhelming and my Unit is discussing how to ensure the soft drinks and biscuits go round. And they expect me to give rapt attention to such mundaneness. I shudder at the fuckery. I’d rather watch a movie in African Magic.

After the meeting, I couldn’t help but conclude many Nigerians worship God because of what they will eat. Long ago, my dad used to tell me that most Nigerian Christians that frequent church like flies frequent latrines are most likely the first to stop attending church once they find themselves in developed countries.

I never got it then but it played out in my very eyes with what I heard at the Unit Meeting today. How does someone pretend to go and pray for 2 hours or thereabouts just to collect a bottle of coca cola. That small bottle sold for #100! What’s that if not poverty? Simply put, if such person was guaranteed same bottle of soft drink every day of the month, they wouldn’t bother to come for one at the beginning of every new month under the stupid guise of a Prayer Meeting.

Now pick a random church in Nigeria and listen to the testimonies of their members. Either they are thanking God for a new car, a new job, or something so basic an atheist in a developed country would have easy access to or even take for granted.

It makes me wonder why we really worship God here.